The Buddha himself spoke about four main places worthy of pilgrimage for his followers.
- Lumbini, his birth place, in Nepal
- Bodh-Gaya, the place in India where he achieved enlightenment
- Sarnath (near Varanasi), where he delivered his first teaching.
- Kusinagar, where he passed into Parinirvana.
Four other sites also became considered to be important places of pilgrimage. The other four are:
• Shravasti, where the Buddha spent the largest amount of time and conducted 22 rainy season summer retreats. This is also the place where began performing a series of miracles to convince skeptics.
• Rajgir, where the Buddha taught the Perfection of Wisdom and subdued an angry elephant through his compassion.
• Sankasia, where the Buddha is said to have descended from Tushita Pure Land after having taught there his deceased mother during the three month period of a summer retreat
• Vaishali, where the Buddha ordained the first female nuns and where he received an offering of honey from a monkey.